A Modernista palace converted into a social centre
On Passeig de Sant Joan there is a Modernista palace decorated with white stucco and stone sculptures. It is Palau Macaya, also called Casa Macaya. Like many other Modernista buildings, it was built for an early 20th-century businessman, in this case by the architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch. Now, Palau Macaya is a social centre.
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Why visit Palau Macaya?
The industrialist and merchant Roman Macaya Gibert commissioned Josep Puig i Cadafalch to construct his family home. The family lived there until 1914 and then it had various owners until it was bought by the ‘la Caixa’ bank in 1947.
Palau Macaya is in the Modernista style, although it has clear civil Gothic influences. The building stands out due to the contrast between the simplicity of the white facade and the profuse stone ornamentation of the windows, which was done by Puig i Cadafalch’s collaborators Eusebi Arnau and Alfons Juyol. Its internal features are three large stone arches, a courtyard, and a stairway decorated with floral motifs, which was formerly used to access the main house.
Now Palau Macaya is a social entity collaboration centre that provides spaces for training, conferences and workshops.
How do you get to Palau Macaya?
Palau Macaya is on Passeig de Sant Joan, between Carrer de Provença and Carrer de Mallorca, just above Avinguda Diagonal. Following Carrer de Provença you can reach it from the Passeig de Gràcia – La Pedrera stop on the Red Route and Blue Route of Barcelona Bus Turístic or from the Sagrada Família stop on the Blue Route of Barcelona Bus Turístic.
For the most curious of you
- Did you know? At the carriage entrance of Palau Macaya the sculptor Eusebi Arnau created a capital with a man on a bicycle. The figure is Josep Puig i Cadafalch, who is also depicted at Casa de les Punxes. The image represents how busy the architect was at that time and makes reference to the continual trips he made when he was simultaneously building Palau Macaya and Casa Amatller.
- Local’s tip: If you enter Palau Macaya, don’t miss its interior courtyard. When you are there look up and you will see a magnificent glass skylight.
- A must: To discover the wealth of Modernisme.
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